Ludwig von Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven is a name that is common to most people and is synonymies with great classical music. He is known, quite loosely, as the German composer who created beautiful pieces with an incredible disability. Despite an unhappy family setting and the deafness that struck soon after, the man appeared to rise from his misfortunes and follow his passion. Mr. Beethoven created some of the most wonderful music and is considered one of the greatest musicians of all time. Ludwig, at a very young age, began his career as a marvelous piano player and composer of piano music. Beethoven continued his work expanding to string quartets and other kinds of chamber music, songs, two masses, an opera, and nine symphonies. The German musical genius made amazing new strides at the end of the Classical era and paved the way for the up and coming Romantic style.
Ludwig van Beethoven's work can best be summed up by the words of Joseph Machlis and Kristine Forney. "Beethoven belonged to the generation that felt the full impact of the French Revolution. He created the music of a heroic age and, in sounds never to be forgotten, proclaimed a faith in the power of people to shape their own destinies." (Machlis 231)
Beethoven was born in Bonn Germany on 17 December 1770. At a very young age he lived in the attic of an apartment raised by his mother, alcoholic father and two younger brothers. His life began with not only the unhappiness that follows an alcoholic parent, but was forced into following the footsteps of his father and grandfather. Both were well established, and quite good, singers at the court of the local prince Max Friedrich. (Machlis 232) Young Ludwig admired his more talented grandfather, but grew ill of...